By SAMANTHA PERRY
Bluefield Daily Telegraph
Bluefield Daily Telegraph Publisher Darryl Hudson is leaving the newspaper to take a position with an Illinois publication.
Hudson will be the new director of finance and assistant group controller for the Rockford Register Star, which is owned by Gatehouse Media.
Keith Blevins, chief operating officer for CNHI, the Daily Telegraph’s parent company, said a search will begin immediately to fill the position.
“We are grateful for what Darryl has accomplished for the Daily Telegraph and in the community,” Blevins said. “We wish him the very best in his future endeavors.
“I am also grateful for the team of thoughtful, committed professionals who produce the Daily Telegraph and who continue to serve this community. Our job now is to find someone with the talent and enthusiasm to lead them,” Blevins said.
Hudson was named publisher of the Daily Telegraph in March 2010. During his time in southern West Virginia, he has been active in many business and community organizations including the Greater Bluefield Chamber of Commerce, the Princeton-Mercer County Chamber of Commerce, the Community Foundation of the Virginias, the Bluefield Rotary Club, the W. Paul Cole Jr. School of Business at Bluefield State College, the West Virginia Press Association and the Bluefield Blueprint Communities project.
Hudson said leaving the Daily Telegraph and the Bluefield area was not an easy decision.
“It’s a good career opportunity but it was a difficult decision because I love this area,” Hudson said. “I think it’s a phenomenal newspaper and the best staff I’ve ever worked with.”
Beckley Newspapers Publisher Frank D. Wood described Hudson as “a great person, an excellent publisher and a good fit with the Bluefield community.”
“Darryl worked closely with the staff of the Daily Telegraph to continue its tradition of editorial excellence,” Wood said. “Through his leadership and technological skills, he helped guide the newspaper into new multi-media products. He was an asset to the newspaper and the community.”
Robert Farley, executive director of the Princeton-Mercer County Chamber of Commerce described Hudson as one who had “the community at heart.”
“I can’t say enough about Darryl Hudson from a chamber of commerce perspective,” Farley said. “He was very much involved in the community. He was very active on our board ... he came to the meetings and he was involved in our activities. He was a delight to work with and he also got the whole paper involved in a lot of things. He was terrific.”
“We have certainly enjoyed having him be an active part of the chamber both through the generous support of the Daily Telegraph and Darryl making time to be on the executive committee,” said Marc Meachum, chief executive officer of the Greater Bluefield Chamber of Commerce.
Hudson served as co-chair of the Bluefield chamber’s governmental affairs committee and was chair-elect of the board.
“We’re sad that he’s not going to be our leader next year, but we certainly wish him all the best,” Meachum said.
Tazewell County Administrator Jim Spencer said it was a privilege to get to know Hudson and work with him through the chamber.
“He was an asset to the area,” Spencer said. “His heart was in the right place in serving the region.”
Hudson said he still has family ties to the Bluefield area and will be visiting often. “I look forward to renewing acquaintances,” he said.